The Meeting of the Three Kings, with David and Isaiah (recto); The Assumption of the Virgin (verso)

Object Details


The Meeting of the Three Kings, with David and Isaiah (recto); The Assumption of the Virgin (verso)


Master of the St. Bartholomew Altarpiece (Netherlandish, active Cologne, Germany about 1470 - 1510)




before 1480


Oil and gold leaf on panel


62.8 x 71.5 cm (24 3/4 x 28 3/16 in.)

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In a barren, mountainous landscape, the three wise kings Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar meet to continue their journey to Bethlehem. Heralds on prancing horses blare trumpets to proclaim the unification of humankind at the birth of Jesus. On the peaked mountains above, the kings appear again at an earlier moment. Their diminutive figures stand or kneel, watching for the star that will lead them to their king. In the right and left corners of the foreground, Isaiah and David hold scrolling banners inscribed with the Old Testament prophecies of the Adoration of the Magi. The Assumption of the Virgin appears on the other side of this panel. Borne aloft by musical angels, the Virgin Mary slowly ascends to be crowned Queen of Heaven by God the Father above. Circles of pastel colors–yellow, pink, and blue–radiate from her, ending with clouds painted in each corner of the composition.

An altarpiece wing functions like a door to a cabinet. Artists often painted both sides of a wing so that a picture would be visible whether the "door" was opened or closed. Because this panel is painted on two sides, it may have once formed part of such a wing.

by 1803 - 1810

Possibly Henry Blundell, 1723/1724 - 1810, probably by inheritance to Charles Robert Blundell, 1810.

1810 - 1837

Charles Robert Blundell, Esq., 1761 - 1837 (Ince Blundell Hall, England), by inheritance to his second cousin twice removed, Thomas Weld-Blundell, 1837.

1837 - 1877

Thomas Weld-Blundell, 1808 - 1887 (Ince Blundell Hall, England), by inheritance to Charles Joseph Weld-Blundell, 1877.

1877 - 1927

Charles Joseph Weld-Blundell, 1844 - 1927 (Ince Blundell Hall, England), by inheritance (as a life interest only) to his daughters Mary Teresa Weld-Blundell and Alice Mary Weld-Blundell, 1927.

1927 - 1947

Alice Mary Weld-Blundell, 1907 - 1947

1927 - 1947

and Mary Teresa Weld-Blundell, died 1957 (Ince Blundell Hall, England), upon the death of Alice Mary Weld-Blundell, her share by inheritance to her sister, Mary Teresa Weld-Blundell.

1947 - 1957

Mary Teresa Weld-Blundell, died 1957 (Ince Blundell Hall, England), by inheritance to her cousin, Joseph William Weld, and her cousin once removed, Wilfred Joseph Weld, 1957.

1957 - 1996

Col. Joseph William Weld, OBE, T.D., born 1909 (Lulworth Hall, Dorset, England)

1957 - 1996

and Wilfred Joseph Weld, born 1934 (Lulworth Hall, Dorset, England)

- 1996

Trustees of the Weld Settlement, sold through Simon Dickinson Ltd. (London) to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1996.

Pictures from Ince Blundell Hall (April 3 to April 30, 1960)
  • Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, April 3 to April 30, 1960, (Cat. pp. 8, 10 14)
Works of Art from Private Collections (September 21 to October 30, 1960)
  • Not currently on view, (Unknown), September 21 to October 30, 1960, (Cat. pp. 10 - 11, Three Kings illustrated 19)
Der Meister des Bartholomäus-Altares, der Meister des Aachener Altares. Kölner Maler der Spätgotik. (March 25 to May 28, 1961)
  • Wallraf-Richartz-Museum - Fondation Corboud, (Cologne), March 25 to May 28, 1961, (Cat. pp. 73 - 75, catalogue by R. Andree, G. Aust, H.R. Leppien, H. Vey, front and back illustrated 10)
German Art 1400 - 1800 from Collections in Great Britain (October 24 to December 10, 1961)
  • Manchester City Galleries, (Manchester), October 24 to December 10, 1961, (Cat. 34)
Late Gothic Art from Cologne (April 5 to June 1, 1977)
  • The National Gallery (London), April 5 to June 1, 1977, (Cat. pp. 94 - 95, front and back illustrated 32)
Der Meister des Bartholomäus-Altares: Tradition und Innovation in der Kölner Malerei um 1500 (May 20 to August 19, 2001)
  • Wallraf-Richartz-Museum - Fondation Corboud, (Cologne), May 20 to August 19, 2001, (Cat.)
Kölns Glanz und Größe Meisterwerke von 1000 bis 1550 aus den großen Sammlungen der Welt (November 3, 2011 to February 26, 2012)
  • Museum Schnütgen, (Cologne), November 3, 2011 to February 26, 2012, (Cat. 214)

Waagen, Gustav Friedrich. Treasures of Art in Great Britian: Being an Account of the Chief Collections of Paintings, Drawings, Sculptures, Illuminated Mss., &c., &c. 3 vols. (London: John Murray, 1854), vol. 3, pp. 251-52.

Jaffé, David. Summary Catalogue of European Paintings in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997), p. 83, ill.

Carr, Dawson W. Andrea Mantegna: The Adoration of the Magi. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997), pp. 55-56, fig. 48 in color.

The J. Paul Getty Museum Handbook of the Collections. 6th ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2001), p. 111, ill.

Zuffi, Stefano. Gospel Figures in Art. Thomas Michael Hartmann, trans. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2003), p. 85.

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    Audio: Meeting of 3 Kings / Assumption of the Virgin